March 25, 2019

or i’ll put you with the goats

Perry thrives off of routine. And the structure of school and the influence of peers. So by the end of two weeks without school things get a little wild around here. 

This afternoon there was a big tantrum. I can’t even recall what set him off. But it was 40 min of anger in the car while we picked Kacin and a friend up from the mall—yelling, bad words, threats to unbuckle his seat belt, etc. I tried all the tricks I could while I was driving: Let’s listen to your favorite song, here’s a juice box, here’s a snack, strikes to lose privileges, talking about something new, and ignoring. Nothing was working!

After we dropped Kacin’s friend off we had to go pick Kyler up. And this is the point that Perry’s threats to take his seat belt off became more than threats and he unbuckled while I was driving down the main road. So I dug deep and got creative and told Perry that he had to the count of three to get his buckle on or I would be taking him to the goats. He knows our friends just got two little goats. And he is not a fan of them. He asked if the goats would bite him. And he told me he would hit them. So I told him that goats kick back. I counted to three and he put his buckle on. 

We got Kyler in the car, but Perry was not settling down. Rather than continue the tantrum at home, where I knew destruction would happen, I decided to let the tantrum continue in the great outdoors of a local park. 

I stuck by Perry for a good half hour trying to keep him away from the rest of his siblings and get him to calm down. (Though I know he hit each of them at least once.) I chased him, tickled him, ignored his mean words, held him, walked with him, pointed interesting things out to him, gave him more strikes which equate to loss of screen time this week, and while there were moments of calm, he raged on. 

Eric called when he left work and we decided the best course of action was for him to meet us at the park so I didn’t have to stick him in the car with his siblings again. 

When Eric showed up, Perry decided he just wanted mom. The mom he had been running from, biting, and calling “a fool” for the last hour and a half. Isn’t that funny how that works? He went and hid on the other side of the park so he wouldn’t have to go with dad. Can you find him? :)

While Perry kept himself hidden, the rest of us sat on the ground and took a moment. To breathe, I guess.

We listened to songs from the Hunger Games soundtrack. Because I’ve been in the mood for that. 

We enjoyed a few minutes in the shade of the first truly warm (in the high 80s) day of the year. 

And I did not have to threaten to drop him off with the goats again.